Posted in Reviews

How to Walk Away by Katherine Center

68511765_10214881214443966_2124989224938635264_n“They say your life flashes before your eyes, but it wasn’t my life as I’d lived it that I saw. It was the life I’d been waiting for. The one I’d never get a chance to live.” 

Happy Tuesday friends! I finished up How to Walk Away by Katherine Center yesterday and WOW! You guys this book was and is everything book dreams are made of! To be honest I never heard of How to Walk Away and it just so happened to pop up on Hoopla so I picked it up and decided that it was the best audiobook I have ever listened to. Here is a little synopsis for you in case you too have not heard of this book.

Margaret Jacobsen has a bright future ahead of her: a fiancé she adores, her dream job, and the promise of a picture-perfect life just around the corner. Then, suddenly, on what should have been one of the happiest days of her life, everything she worked for is taken away in one tumultuous moment.

In the hospital and forced to face the possibility that nothing will ever be the same again, Margaret must figure out how to move forward on her own terms while facing long-held family secrets, devastating heartbreak, and the idea that love might find her in the last place she would ever expect.

How to Walk Away is Katherine Center at her very best: an utterly charming, hopeful, and romantic novel that will capture reader’s hearts with every page. 

Let me start off by saying that I freakin’ love our main character Margaret! She is feisty, strong headed, funny, and independent. Although she has found herself in a less than exciting situation, she refuses to let everyone walk all over her or treat her any different than how they did prior to her accident. I really think that Katherine Center did a phenomenal job developing every character! I love when I can picture every character and feel as if I know exactly who they are. Like I can meet for coffee with Maggie and her sister—-and don’t even get me started on Ian…can we just say hubba hubba!?

Overall though, I loved how Center was able to make me feel so many emotions. One minute she had me literally laughing out loud and the next minute I would feel so much grief. However, despite the grief–I found hope just as Margaret did. At the end Maggie says something that will forever live with me and I hope that it will do the same for you—-“You have to live the life you have, you have to find inspiration in the struggle, and pull joy out of the hardship——Because that is all we can do, carry the sorrow when we have to and savor the joy when can.”  How beautiful is that? I think that at times we forget to find the joy within our struggles and life is far too short to wallow in self pity, so I encourage you to find joy even in the smallest things. 

Have you read this book? Let me know your thoughts in the comments.

xoxo,

Nicole

Posted in book of the month

My BOTM Pick: August 2019

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Happy Friday my fellow bookworms! We made it to the end of the week and it is now time to soak up some sunshine and relax! This weekend I will be diving into Well Met by Jen Deluca which also happens to be my August Book of the Month pick! I have been seeing this book ALL over #bookstagram and I am so glad to now have it in my possession! What makes it even more special is that this book is not set to release until September 3rd! Not sure what this book is? Well here is a little synopsis from goodreads.
All’s faire in love and war for two sworn enemies who indulge in a harmless flirtation in a laugh-out-loud rom-com from debut author, Jen DeLuca.

Emily knew there would be strings attached when she relocated to the small town of Willow Creek, Maryland, for the summer to help her sister recover from an accident, but who could anticipate getting roped into volunteering for the local Renaissance Faire alongside her teenaged niece? Or that the irritating and inscrutable schoolteacher in charge of the volunteers would be so annoying that she finds it impossible to stop thinking about him?

The faire is Simon’s family legacy and from the start he makes clear he doesn’t have time for Emily’s lighthearted approach to life, her oddball Shakespeare conspiracy theories, or her endless suggestions for new acts to shake things up. Yet on the faire grounds he becomes a different person, flirting freely with Emily when she’s in her revealing wench’s costume. But is this attraction real, or just part of the characters they’re portraying?

This summer was only ever supposed to be a pit stop on the way to somewhere else for Emily, but soon she can’t seem to shake the fantasy of establishing something more with Simon, or a permanent home of her own in Willow Creek.

Does this sound like a book that you will pick up on release day? Let me know what you think in the comments! 

xoxo,

Nicole

Posted in Uncategorized

He Loves Me, He Loves Me Not by Iris Morland Cover Reveal!

Title: He Loves Me, He Loves Me Not: A Steamy Romantic Comedy (The Flower Shop Sisters)

Author: Iris Morland

Genre: Romantic comedy

Release date: July 16, 2019

Blurb:

I’m a good girl—until I got drunk in Vegas and married a panties-flaming-hot Irishman.

Oops.

I’ve always lived my life by the rules. Unlike my two sisters, I’m the good one. The responsible one. Going outside my comfort zone is when I wear red lipstick before five PM.

That comfort zone of mine? It’s smashed to smithereens on a wild night in Las Vegas when I met—and married—Liam Gallagher.

After one shot of tequila, then two, then too many to count, a good girl’s rules tend to disappear. And so do her panties, and her bra, and various other articles of clothing when she’s with an Irishman who knows his way around a woman’s body.

Now my husband wants us to stay married. For six months. He says it’ll be worth my while. Considering our chemistry underneath the sheets, I can’t say that he’s wrong.

Liam isn’t safe, though. Liam definitely isn’t comfortable. He’s like the male equivalent of wearing red lipstick in the daytime all wrapped up in an irresistible, dangerous package.

Yet this stubborn Irishman isn’t about to let me go, drunken Princess Bride-themed Vegas wedding or no.

Now I have to decide if I’m brave enough to break the rules for love.

Goodreads:

http://irismorland.com/loves-goodreads

Preorder links:

Amazon: http://irismorland.com/loves-amazon

Apple: http://irismorland.com/loves-apple

Barnes & Noble: http://irismorland.com/loves-bn

Kobo: http://irismorland.com/loves-kobo

http://irismorland.com/loves-kobo

Google Play:

http://irismorland.com/loves-gp

About the author: A coffee addict and cat lover, Iris Morland is the author of over a dozen sexy, small-town romances and romantic comedies. If she’s not reading or writing, she enjoys binging on Netflix shows and cooking something delicious.

Connect with Iris

Newsletter: http://irismorland.com/newsletter

Reader group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/irismorlandsmermaids/

Other links:

Website: http://irismorland.com

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/irismorlandbooks

Instagram: http://www.instagram.com/iris_morland

Twitter:

http://www.twitter.com/irismorland

BookBub: https://www.bookbub.com/authors/iris-morland

Posted in Reviews

Field Notes on Love by Jennifer E. Smith

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stars

I never thought I would fall in love with Field Notes on Love and yet here I am, a big cry baby because of how much I loved this novel by Jennifer E. Smith! It was the first book that I have ever read by this author and I am so thankful that I was able to get my hands on a copy. I bet you are wondering, “Nicole, why did you love this book so much?” Well bookworms, let me tell you:

It involves a cross country train trip from New York to California

  • I have an aching for wanderlust and knew that this would just make me want to travel even more…preferably by train now.

The dynamic between our two main characters was so perfect.

  • Hugo: an 18 year old boy from England who just so happens to be a sextuplet and is now “famous,” in his little town of Surrey.
  • Mae: an 18 year old from New York who has two dads and a grandma who is spunky and wants Mae to live the best life she can.

The way love comes to be in this story is just so sweet and makes you swoon way too much!

Most things are easier than you think,” She says “It’s deciding to do them that’s hard.”

Hugo has always lived his life in the shadows of his five other siblings and by that I mean that it has always been Hugo and his brothers and sisters. They did everything together….they were a package deal when it came to EVERYTHING. All Hugo wanted was to live a life separate from his siblings, but how can he do that without completely shutting them out and making his family upset. On top of trying to figure that out, he was going through a break-up. All Hugo knew is that he NEEDED to go on the trip that him and his now ex-girlfriend were going to take…..a train trip across America. Once he realized that everything was in her name and that he could not change the reservations…he did something completely out of the ordinary. He was going to find himself another Margaret Campbell and was going to ask her to “pretend,” to be Margaret Campbell his ex-girlfriend!

Mae has always known what she wanted to do, being that both of her dad’s were artistic it was just a given that she would fall in love with film. Her hopes and dreams were to attend school in California at one of the most respected film schools in America and maybe even in the world. However, when she got that rejection letter…Mae did not know what to do. She thought the film she sent the school was perfect! She knew she needed to change something, but what is there to change when you already love it so much? After getting advice from pretty much every person in her life, she found that she needed to experience a little more life. So when her friend Priyanka sends her a link to a wanted ad of a boy looking for a Margaret Campbell to take a cross country train trip with….she decided to do the unthinkable….she responded! Sadly, she did not get chosen and school was about to start…so she just sat it out….until she got another email saying that the previous winner was unable to make it!

Now Hugo and Mae have come together at Penn Station to embark on a trip of lifetime. The catch though, neither of their parents know they are traveling with a complete stranger. Every time their parents call they fib a little in hopes that they won’t find out. Of course Hugo’s parents would eventually find out because when you are part of sextuplets…someone is bound to spill the beans. For Mae though, her little secret remained a secret. Her grandma was the one who knew and being that she too found love on a train many years ago, all she wanted was for her granddaughter to do the same. So off they went on this journey of a lifetime where they each would gain more life experience and even find love! 

You guys, this book was absolutely perfect and all I hope is that there is a second novel that will go a little further into the relationship between Hugo and Mae. Will Mae get into film school? Does Hugo stay in the USA or does he go back to England for good? Do the two of them end up being in a long lasting relationship? So many questions!

Have you read this? Let me know in the comments!

 

xoxo,

Nicole!

 

 

Goodreads | Amazon

Posted in Reviews

Meet Your Baker by Ellie Alexander

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stars

Synopsis:


Welcome to Torte-a friendly, small-town family bake shop where the treats are so good that, sometimes, it’s criminal…

After graduating from culinary school, Juliet Capshaw returns to her quaint hometown of Ashland, Oregon, to heal a broken heart and help her mom at the family bakery. The Oregon Shakespeare Festival is bringing in lots of tourists looking for some crumpets to go with their heroic couplets. But when one of Torte’s customers turns up dead, there’s much ado about murder…

The victim is Nancy Hudson, the festival’s newest board member. A modern-day Lady Macbeth, Nancy has given more than a few actors and artists enough reasons to kill her…but still. The silver lining? Jules’s high school sweetheart, Thomas, is the investigator on the case. His flirtations are as delicious as ever, and Jules can’t help but want to have her cake and eat it too. But will she have her just desserts? Murder might be bad for business, but love is the sweetest treat of all…

Review


Meet Your Baker was the perfect cozy mystery! It had such a great balance of suspense, love, humor, and great relationships.  It was the first novel that I have read by Ellie Alexander and it did not disappoint. Once I finished, I was eager to start the second book!

This particular novel follows Jules Capshaw who just moved back home to Ashland, Oregon after being on a cruise ship for several years working as a chef. Her plan was to stay at home for a short while and then move on to her next adventure. Little did she know that her heart would rekindle the love she once had for her small town and her families bakery Torte. However, when one of Torte’s customers is murdered, Jules finds herself in the middle of the investigation. Whether she was seeking answers or not, some how she would find bits and pieces to help her solve the case. Sadly, when Jules finally figures out who committed the murder, she would find herself in the act of another murder….or does she?

I will most definitely catch up on the series and hope to be done before the next novel comes out! I would highly recommend Meet the Baker if you are at all interested in cozy mysteries!

Amazon|Goodreads|Bookbub

 

Posted in Monthly Book Wrap Up

February 2019 Wrap Up

Happy Thursday friends! Can you believe we are already done with February? I mean where does time go? This was a pretty good reading month for me, but fell flat the last full week of the month being that I was sick. I was able to complete seven books which puts me right on track for my yearly goal!

 

Mistletoe and Mayhem: I started this in January and was able to finish it within the first week of the February. I absolutely adore London Lovett’s novels so this was a fun read for me!

A Girl Like Her: This was the Dragons and Tea Book Club February read. This was way better than I thought it would be and was so smitten by the romance in this novel.

Forever Winter: This was a classic Alexa Riley book and was filled with some steamy romance.

The Girl He Used to Know: This was hands down my favorite read of the month! This ARC was provided via St.Martins Press. This novel was everything and left me in tears. Everyone needs to read this! My review can be found here.

Truth or Beard: I listened to the audio version of this book and loved it! I always enjoy Penny Reid’s writing and this did not disappoint. My Review can be found here.

Baby-Sitters Club Mystery #1- Stacey and the Missing Ring: This was just a fun nostalgic read!

Waisted: I received the eARC of this novel via Netgalley and Atria Books. I wanted to love this book so much, but it fell flat for me. My review can be found here.

What books did you read this month?

 

xoxo,

Nicole

Posted in Uncategorized

What I’m Reading 02.25.19

Happy Monday friends, it has been quite some time! I was so sick the last week and could not get the energy to create content let alone read. I even had to cancel my trip to West Virginia which was a bummer, but hopefully I can go in the next couple of weeks!  I was hoping to complete three books last week, but was only able to finish Waisted by Randy Susan Meyers. My review for this book will be up in the next couple of days! As for this week, I am hoping to complete two books and start a third! The books I will be reading are:

  1. Last Summer by Kerry Lonsdale
  2. Crimes Against a Book Club by Kathy Cooperman
  3. Foolish Hearts by Emma Mills

What are you reading this week?

 

xoxo

Nicole

Posted in Reviews

Review: Truth or Beard by Penny Reid

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Goodreads|Amazon

★★★★

Title: Truth or Beard

Author: Penny Reid

Series: The Winston Brothers, #1

Pages: 390

Genre: Contemporary Romance

My Rating: ★★★★

Goodreads Synopsis:

Identical twins Beau and Duane Winston might share the same devastatingly handsome face, but where Beau is outgoing and sociable, Duane is broody and reserved. This is why Jessica James, recent college graduate and perpetual level-headed good girl, has been in naïve and unhealthy infatuation with Beau Winston for most of her life. 

His friendly smiles make her tongue-tied and weak-kneed, and she’s never been able to move beyond her childhood crush. Whereas Duane and Jessica have always been adversaries. She can’t stand him, and she’s pretty sure he can’t stand the sight of her…

But after a case of mistaken identity, Jessica finds herself in a massive confusion kerfuffle. Jessica James has spent her whole life paralyzed by the fantasy of Beau and her assumptions of Duane’s disdain; therefore she’s unprepared for the reality that is Duane’s insatiable interest, as well as his hot hands and hot mouth and hotter looks. Not helping Jessica’s muddled mind and good girl sensibilities, Duane seems to have gotten himself in trouble with the local biker gang, the Iron Order.

Certainly, Beau’s magic spell is broken. Yet when Jessica finds herself drawn to the man who was always her adversary, now more dangerous than ever, how much of her level-head heart is she willing to risk?

My Review:

I have enjoyed Penny Reid’s writing and have heard so much about The Winston Brother’s series. It has taken me awhile to start, but book one was such a fun read!  I was not sure what to expect going into this series, but it was filled with some good humor, romance, and some unexpected turns. 

The characters in this book are so lovable and very relatable.   Jessica James is an outgoing, strong-willed woman with a wanderer’s heart. She knows what she wants and she will not let anything stop her. Duane is also strong-willed, but more reserved,family oriented, and loyal. He works at the body shop that him and his brother’s own and does not plan on moving anytime soon. Jess on the other hand cannot wait for the day that she pays off her student debt so she can begin travelling. However, like every love story..their hearts get pulled in different directions and have to decide if their love is worth the compromising of each of their dreams.

I would say the part that I hated about this book was just the back and forth with their relationship. One minute you would be cheering them on and the next you just wanted them to part ways. I know they had to figure out what was going to work and if it was even worth it, but I did get to a point where enough was enough. Thankfully, towards the end of the story they talked out their frustrations and came up with a plan that would suite the both of them. 

Overall, I enjoyed this series and plan to continue on with the series. I am excited to see where their relationship leads and look forward to learning more about the other Winston brothers! 

Have you read any of Penny Reid’s novels? If so, which is your favorite?

 

xoxo

Nicole

Posted in Reviews

Review: The Girl He Used to Know by Tracey Garvis Graves

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Goodreads|Amazon

★★★★★

Title: The Girl He Used to Know

Author: Tracey Garvis Graves

Release Date: April 2, 2019

Pages: 304

Genre: Contemporary Fiction, Romance

My Rating: ★★★★★

 

Goodreads synopsis:

Annika (rhymes with Monica) Rose is an English major at the University of Illinois. Anxious in social situations where she finds most people’s behavior confusing, she’d rather be surrounded by the order and discipline of books or the quiet solitude of playing chess.

Jonathan Hoffman joined the chess club and lost his first game–and his heart–to the shy and awkward, yet brilliant and beautiful Annika. He admires her ability to be true to herself, quirks and all, and accepts the challenges involved in pursuing a relationship with her. Jonathan and Annika bring out the best in each other, finding the confidence and courage within themselves to plan a future together. What follows is a tumultuous yet tender love affair that withstands everything except the unforeseen tragedy that forces them apart, shattering their connection and leaving them to navigate their lives alone.

Now, a decade later, fate reunites Annika and Jonathan in Chicago. She’s living the life she wanted as a librarian. He’s a Wall Street whiz, recovering from a divorce and seeking a fresh start. The attraction and strong feelings they once shared are instantly rekindled, but until they confront the fears and anxieties that drove them apart, their second chance will end before it truly begins. 

My Review:

I cannot even begin to explain how much I adored this novel. Tracey Garvis Graves wrote each character with complete care and detail. It was beautiful watching each character unravel throughout the novel. Annika is the most delicate of all the characters,  she is socially awkward, she loves books, chess, has not dated much, and does not understand why people treat her differently. Jonathan on the other hand is outgoing, has a decent amount of friends, works at a bar, and is advanced in the dating department. They were complete opposites, but that is what made their relationship work so well. I absolutely loved how gentle Jonathan was towards Annika and how he paid so much detail to her facial expressions in order to understand what was going through her mind. He had to work hard at the relationship, but he never let that stop him from falling head over heels for her. 

It broke my heart when they went their separate ways, but was so glad that fate would reunite them. Annika had worked so hard throughout the ten years they were apart and it truly helped her grow to be able to give herself in a way she was never able to. I was definitely cheering them on and wanted them to get back together. Without going into too much detail….the ending wrecked me. I cried for twenty minutes. I literally felt like I was watching my best friends go through such much pain. All I can say is that you need to read this book ASAP so you can see what I am talking about!

Thank you to Macmillan Publishing and St. Martin’s Press for providing me with this ARC copy! 

 

xoxo

Nicole

Posted in Reviews

Review: A Girl Like Her by Talia Hibbert

 

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Goodreads|Barnes & Noble |Amazon

“There are some things you don’t get over. You just accept them, and keep breathing. That’s enough.”

This week I had the opportunity to read A Girl Like Her by Talia Hibbert along with the Dragons and Tea book club and all I can say is WOW! This was so so good and I never wanted to put it down.

The story follows a short, curvy, autistic woman named Ruth who is also known as the town’s “jezebel.” Ruth has had one heck of a ride when it comes to the people of Ravenswood due to rumors and the constant gossip throughout the town. Instead of being around the people who hate her, Ruth isolates herself in her apartment. Little did she know, her dreamy new neighbor Evan would rock her world. Not only is Evan easy on the eyes, he is kind, accepting of Ruth, a fixer of things, and he can cook! Ruth went from eating frozen dinners to having dinner cooked for her almost every night because of Evan. He could not stand the fact that she was living off little and knew that he needed to take care of her…even if he did not know her. All he knew was that he was falling head over heels for this girl and wanted to make her his one and only. However, Ruth being the person she is, would make that very difficult. She figured he would just be another guy who would add to the gossip. Will Evan win Ruth over?

I truly adored this book and knew that I needed to be friends with Ruth ASAP! She is quirky, sassy, and has such a great sense of humor. I love that Hibbert created Ruth as someone with autism, but did not create her to be a scientist/doctor/math wiz like other autistic characters are portrayed. Ruth was truly something beautiful and all you wanted was for her to win. For her to be able to live her life as she wanted without the scrutiny of those around her. I am definitely a cheerleader on the sideline cheering her on! As for Evan, my is he the man every girl wants!? I loved that he did not try to be someone that he was not and wanted to be friends/lovers with the girl everyone hated. He was so so kind to her and although at times it would be difficult to keep his hands off of Ruth, he always made sure that she was okay it. He was just an all around gentleman and all I wanted was for the two to be together and live happily ever after!

“that I will always treat you as you deserve to be treated. That I will always respect you. That I won’t lie to you or betray your trust. I try not to say never, but I will say this: hurting you is something I would never choose to do. I swear.”

 

My Rating: 💛💛💛💛💛

Have you read this book? If not tell me what some of your favorite romance novels are in the comments!

 

xoxo

Nicole